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Gunsight Pass

Average Rating:    (5 of 5)

No. of Reviews: 1

This is an unusual ride for Crested Butte in that there's no singletrack, only a jeep road. Still, this is a great ride, more fun and more challenging than some of the more popular singletrack routes. From the junction with Upper Lower Loop Trail it climbs steadily for some 8-10 miles to Gunsight Pass, elevation 12,100 feet. Portions are rough; the descent can be painful because your bike will bounce around over stubborn rocks. Snowfields may block your way near the top. When you get to the top, turn around, because the routes on the south and west side of Mt. Emmons are too hard to follow unless you're with someone who knows them. This is a difficult ride. Be prepared for the risks of thunderstorms, cold weather, and isolation. Snowfields can be dangerous; you can fall through them to rocks below. Be careful.
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Latitude
38.87339396391463
Longitude
-106.9900131225586
Trail Directions
From the northwest corner of Crested Butte, take the unpaved road out to the Lower Loop Trail, a singletrack. You'll soon come to a junction with the Upper Lower Loop Trail, another singletrack; go left to take that trail. Upper Lower Loop ends at a jeep road, which is the route to Gunsight Pass. Turn left and go uphill some 3,000 vertical feet.The Alpineer bike shop in Crested Butte sells a map that shows the route to the pass.
Trail Length
~20 miles
Trail Level
Advanced
Trail Type
Fire Roads
City/County
Crested Butte
Web Address
No known site
   


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Reviews 1 - 1 (1 Reviews Total)

Review Date
August 13, 2003

Overall Rating
 5 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 4 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 4 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

Visitors rate this review
5.00 of 5, 2.00 votes

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Reviewed by: imtnbke ,  Cross Country Rider , from Oakland, Calif., USA

Summary:
This is one of the best rides I've done at Crested Butte. The scenery is majestic, particularly near the top. I like to climb, however, and I'd had about two weeks to get acclimated. You might not feel as enthusiastic about the miles of climbing through thinner and thinner air to the pass. The surface is rough in places, and it hurt on the descent (I have a softtail). But those familiar with the Pine Mountain Loop in Marin County should feel right at home.

Recommended Route:
The route is described in the introductory part of this page. At the pass, there's a footpath that may go to the summit of Mt. Emmons. I walked up it only partway so I don't know where it ends up.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Dyke Trail, 403.



Comments
imtnbke (08/13/2009)
This is an update to my review of 2003.

This is a great ride with matchless scenery, but you have to be willing to ride up Gunsight Pass Road, just north of Crested Butte. It climbs from 9,000 to about 12,100 feet. That's not bad in itself, but this is a very rough jeep road so one is riding over fields of rocks for almost the whole way, which probably doubles the effort of the climb. Above 11,300 feet it's mostly hike-a-bike.

This time I made my way down the back (west) side, which is dotted with abandoned and working mines. I'm really glad I did it, but I wouldn't have succeeded without a GPS, a mapped-out route on the device, and a paper map. Otherwise it would have been easy to become lost and find myself on a track that dead-ends at a mine. Either prepare well beforehand with navigational aids or bring someone who knows the route.
imtnbke (08/13/2009)
This is an update to my review of 2003.

This is a great ride with matchless scenery, but you have to be willing to ride up Gunsight Pass Road, just north of Crested Butte. It climbs from 9,000 to about 12,100 feet. That's not bad in itself, but this is a very rough jeep road so one is riding over fields of rocks for almost the whole way, which probably doubles the effort of the climb. Above 11,300 feet it's mostly hike-a-bike.

This time I made my way down the back (west) side, which is dotted with abandoned and working mines. I'm really glad I did it, but I wouldn't have succeeded without a GPS, a mapped-out route on the device, and a paper map. Otherwise it would have been easy to become lost and find myself on a track that dead-ends at a mine. Either prepare well beforehand with navigational aids or bring someone who knows the route.
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Reviews 1 - 1 (1 Reviews Total)

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